Silver Bird Cage Ornament

Cage measures 2.5” long with a 2” base.

Cage measures 2.5” long with a 2” base.

 

Clay is a wonderfully versatile medium to work with and has almost no limits when it comes to creativity.  It transforms into a solid surface in only 30 minutes, allowing you to continue working quickly.  Clay also works well with other media as you can see in this bird cage.  Clay, wire, and rhinestones are combined to make an unusual ornament with a movable swing. Two different size round cookie cutters are used to form the base and a texture wheel makes the beautifully engraved bottom ring simple to do.  And you don’t have to be an artist to create the bird.  See the easy steps in the separate instructions on my page, How To Make A Clay Cardinal.

IMPORTANT NOTE - Setting numbers vary on clay conditioning machines.  On my Sculpey machine the thickest setting is 1 and the thinnest is 9.

Directions

step 1 - Condition and roll out silver clay to fit around your small cookie cutter.  Roll across the clay with a texture wheel.  Place plastic wrap on the clay and cut the long edges straight.  The clay should be .50” wide.

step 1 - Condition and roll out silver clay to fit around your small cookie cutter.  Roll across the clay with a texture wheel.  Place plastic wrap on the clay and cut the long edges straight.  The clay should be .50” wide.

step 2 - Wrap foil around the cookie cutter.  Place the clay strip around the foil and blend the two ends together.  Bake on a foil lined baking sheet in a 275 degree oven for 30 minutes.  Allow to cool before handling.

step 2 - Wrap foil around the cookie cutter.  Place the clay strip around the foil and blend the two ends together.  Bake on a foil lined baking sheet in a 275 degree oven for 30 minutes.  Allow to cool before handling.

step 3 - Roll out more clay to about 1/8” thick.  Place plastic wrap over it and cut out two disks with the larger cookie cutter.

step 3 - Roll out more clay to about 1/8” thick.  Place plastic wrap over it and cut out two disks with the larger cookie cutter.

step 4 - Using the smaller cookie cutter, make an impression in the center of one of the disks.

step 4 - Using the smaller cookie cutter, make an impression in the center of one of the disks.

step 5 - Place six beads equal distance apart around the inside of the circle.  Press the beads into the clay.  The bead holes should be large enough to accommodate the 18 gauge wire.

step 5 - Place six beads equal distance apart around the inside of the circle.  Press the beads into the clay.  The bead holes should be large enough to accommodate the 18 gauge wire.

step 6 - Using your palm, roll out a thin tube of clay.  Place it on the line made by the small cookie cutter.  Position the baked ring on top and press to seal the ring to the tube.  Arrange the disks on top of each other with wrong sides facing.

step 6 - Using your palm, roll out a thin tube of clay.  Place it on the line made by the small cookie cutter.  Position the baked ring on top and press to seal the ring to the tube.  Arrange the disks on top of each other with wrong sides facing.

step 7 - Run the needle tool through the beads and out the bottom of the disks to create a hole for the black cage wire.  With your fingers roll a 1” long, thin log with black clay to act as the bird’s perch.  Bake all the pieces on a foil lined sheet in a 275 degree oven for 30 minutes.  Allow to cool completely.

step 7 - Run the needle tool through the beads and out the bottom of the disks to create a hole for the black cage wire.  With your fingers roll a 1” long, thin log with black clay to act as the bird’s perch.  Bake all the pieces on a foil lined sheet in a 275 degree oven for 30 minutes.  Allow to cool completely.

step 8 - Roll out green and red clay.  Use a craft knife to cut holly leaf shapes in the green clay and create veins in the center.  Roll bits of red clay in your fingers to create the berries.  Press them to the leaves.  Use an Etch n’ Pearl tool to make a holehidden in the berries which will allow you to connect wire for hanging them.  Bake the leaves on a foil lined sheet in a 275 degree oven for 30minutes.  Allow to cool before handling.

step 8 - Roll out green and red clay.  Use a craft knife to cut holly leaf shapes in the green clay and create veins in the center.  Roll bits of red clay in your fingers to create the berries.  Press them to the leaves.  Use an Etch n’ Pearl tool to make a holehidden in the berries which will allow you to connect wire for hanging them.  Bake the leaves on a foil lined sheet in a 275 degree oven for 30minutes.  Allow to cool before handling.

step 9 - Cut 3 pieces of wire 6” long.  Dip both ends in E-6000 glue.  Place one end of wire in a bead and push it through to the bottom.  Place the other end of the wire in the bead opposite.  This will create a bend in the wire.  Don’t worry if it’s slightly lopsided.  You can straighten the wires later.  Attach the second and third wire in the same way.  Allow the glue to dry for 24 hours.  If a bead becomes dislodged in the process, glue it back into place.

step 9 - Cut 3 pieces of wire 6” long.  Dip both ends in E-6000 glue.  Place one end of wire in a bead and push it through to the bottom.  Place the other end of the wire in the bead opposite.  This will create a bend in the wire.  Don’t worry if it’s slightly lopsided.  You can straighten the wires later.  Attach the second and third wire in the same way.  Allow the glue to dry for 24 hours.  If a bead becomes dislodged in the process, glue it back into place.

step 10 - Cut a 4” piece of 18 gauge wire for the bird’s swing.  Make loops in the ends with round nose pliers.  The loops should be large enough to fit around the perch ends.

step 10 - Cut a 4” piece of 18 gauge wire for the bird’s swing.  Make loops in the ends with round nose pliers.  The loops should be large enough to fit around the perch ends.

step 11 - Bend the loops forward to face each other.  Insert the perch ends into the loops.  Glue the bird’s claws to the perch and allow it to set.

step 11 - Bend the loops forward to face each other.  Insert the perch ends into the loops.  Glue the bird’s claws to the perch and allow it to set.

step 12 - Put a wire under the center top of all the cage wires and the swing wire and twist it to secure them together.  Leave a long tail on the wire to use as a hanger for the ornament.  straighten the cage wires if needed.  Glue rhinestones around the textured ring.

step 12 - Put a wire under the center top of all the cage wires and the swing wire and twist it to secure them together.  Leave a long tail on the wire to use as a hanger for the ornament.  straighten the cage wires if needed.  Glue rhinestones around the textured ring.

step 13 - Pass a piece of 22 gauge wire through the holes in the leaves and attach them as a group to the center top of the bird cage.

step 13 - Pass a piece of 22 gauge wire through the holes in the leaves and attach them as a group to the center top of the bird cage.

 

Supplies

At Amazon

  • green clay
  • red clay
  • silver clay
  • black clay
  • clay shaping tools
  • acrylic roller
  • clay conditioning machine
  • texture wheel
  • 18 gauge black wire
  • 22 gauge wire
  • six beads
  • round nose pliers
  • E-6000 glue
  • rhinestones

Miscellaneous

  • craft knife
  • heavy duty aluminum foil
  • round cookie cutters in two sizes

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